Review: iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus | iLounge

Review

Review: iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus

A-
Highly Recommended
iPhone 8 Plus

B+
Recommended
iPhone 8

Company: Apple

Model: iPhone 8 / iPhone 8 Plus

Price: $699 – $949

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Jesse Hollington

Pros: Solid updates to both of Apple’s standard iPhone models offer the same horsepower as Apple’s upcoming iPhone X in a proven and familiar form factor. New all-glass design brings back some of the “museum-quality” elegance of the iPhone 4 era. Virtually identical dimensions mean that almost all previous cases should continue to fit. A11 processor unlocks new camera improvements and experiences such as augmented reality. True Tone display improves on-screen color reproduction. Despite the same specs, both models feature noticeable camera improvements. iPhone 8 Plus gains a new Portrait Lighting mode for even better portrait photos. Fast-charging provides a 50 percent charge in 30 minutes. Wireless Qi charging makes recharging more convenient, especially when using a case.

Cons: Modest improvements over the iPhone 7 make this year’s update feel less significant, particularly in comparison to the looming iPhone X. The iPhone 8 continues to lag behind its larger sibling for photography. Package still only includes the same 5W power adapter as before, so you’ll need to supply your own adapter for faster charging. Wireless charging also doesn’t offer any additional performance over the included 5W power adapter.

Apple’s iPhone product cycle has almost become predictable over the past several years. Since the release of the iPhone 3GS in 2009 as a follow-up to the 2008 iPhone 3G, Apple has followed a trend of releasing major physical updates to its iPhone models in even-numbered years, with “S” models in odd-numbered years that maintain the same design but pack in new features.

So needless to say, after eight years of this trend, it was reasonable to expect that we’d see Apple’s two new standard iPhone models given the “iPhone 7s” designation, even despite rumours that a higher-end premium iPhone was also on the horizon. In fact, many third-party manufacturers also banked that this product naming scheme would continue, as evidenced by the number of early cases we’ve received labelled for the “iPhone 7s” and “iPhone 7s Plus.”

This year, however Apple chose to buck the trend, going up a whole numeric increment with its two new “standard” iPhone models. While we suspect that this has more to do with marketing and product positioning — we can certainly understand why Apple wouldn’t want to announce a pair of “iPhone 7s” models alongside the flashy new iPhone X — there’s room for debate as to whether the actual advancements offered by the new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are worthy of a whole new model number, or if these two new models are really just another incremental bump from last year’s iPhone 7 series.

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Editors' Note: iLounge only reviews products in "final" form, but many companies now change their offerings - sometimes several times - after our reviews have been published. This iLounge article provides more information on this practice, known as revving.

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